Quinine Sulfate is used for the treatment of malaria. This is used alone or with other medications to treat the condition. Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by a parasite. The parasite is transmitted to humans through the bites of infected mosquitoes. People with this disease frequently experience chills, fever, and flu-like illness. If you are traveling to locations where malaria is common, take steps to prevent mosquito bites by wearing protective clothing. Depending on the area you are visiting and your individual risk factors for the infection. You may also take preventive medications before, during and after your trip. Malaria infection is generally characterized by the following signs and symptoms:
- Muscle pain and fatigue
- Nausea and vomiting
- Chest or abdominal pain
Malaria parasites can enter the body through these mosquito bites. These parasites live in body tissues such as red blood cells. Once these enter your body, they travel to your liver where they multiply. They invade your red blood cells which are important cells in your blood that carry oxygen. The parasites get inside them, lay their eggs, and multiply until the red blood cell bursts. This releases more parasites into your bloodstream. As they attack more of your healthy red blood cells, this infection can make you feel very sick.
This medication sometimes may also be used to treat recurrent night-time leg cramps. It can take up to 4 weeks of taking Quinine Sulfate before an improvement in the condition is seen. You should keep a sleep and cramp diary for a few weeks before you start taking Quinine Sulfate and continue this while you are taking it. It is to help you monitor whether the medicine is helping. If your cramps don’t seem to have improved after 4 weeks of taking this drug then it should be stopped.
Quinine Sulfate is a type of medicine called an antimalarial. This kills the malaria parasites during their development stage in the liver and inside red blood cells. This is supplied for oral use as capsules. Each capsule is available in the dosage form of 324 mg. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this prescription.
How does Quinine Sulfate work?
Quinine Sulfate attacks the parasites once they have entered the red blood cells. It kills the parasites and prevents them from multiplying further. Malaria is a potentially fatal disease that is caused by several types of single-celled parasites known as Plasmodium. Plasmodium is carried by mosquitoes and injected into the bloodstream during a bite from an infected mosquito. Once in the blood, the parasites travel to the liver where they multiply. The parasites are then released back into the bloodstream where they invade the red blood cells and multiply again. An actual attack of malaria develops when the red blood cells burst, releasing a mass of parasites into the bloodstream. The attacks do not begin until a sufficient number of blood cells have been infected with parasites.
How to use Quinine Sulfate?
The recommended dosage is based on your medical condition, age, and response to the treatment. This is to be taken by mouth usually every 8 hours for 3 to 7 days or as directed by your doctor. You may take each dose with or without a meal. Swallow the tablet as a whole with a full glass of water. Do not break, chew, or crush it. Drink plenty of fluids while having this medication. Doing so may lessen the risk of certain side effects. Your doctor may direct you to start at a lower dose and eventually increase it. Remember to take it at the same time and in the same way each day.
Do not suddenly stop taking this medication without the consent of your doctor. It may cause another complication or may worsen your current condition. For the best benefit from this product, take it regularly.If you missed a dose, take it as soon as you remember it. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to make up for the missed dose. Let your doctor know if your condition does not improve or if it gets worse.
What are the side effects of Quinine Sulfate?
- Mild headache
- Upset stomach
- Unusual sweating
- Ringing in the ears
- Muscle weakness
- Decreased hearing
- Blurred vision
- Spinning sensation
- Temporary changes in color vision
Tell your doctor right away if you have these serious side effects:
- Changes in the amount of urine
- Easy bruising or bleeding
- Signs of serious infection (severe chills, high fever, and persistent sore throat)
- Signs of a sudden loss of red blood cells (brown urine, severe tiredness, or rapid breathing at rest)
- Signs of severe liver problems (severe weakness, unusually dark urine, and yellow skin or eyes)
Get emergency medical help if you have any signs of an allergic reaction such as:
- Trouble breathing
- Swelling of throat, lips, tongue, or face
Warnings and Precautions
- Before taking Quinine Sulfate, let your doctor know if you have any medical history especially of kidney or liver problems, heart rhythm, and certain eye nerve problems.
- This drug may make you feel dizzy or blur your vision. Do not drive or use any machinery that needs your full alertness.
- While having this medication, limit alcoholic beverages. It can make you dizzier.
- Let your doctor know if you ever had an allergic reaction to Quinine Sulfate. This product may contain an inactive ingredient that causes an allergic reaction. Tell as well if you have any allergies.
- Do not share this with others even if they have the same symptoms as yours.
- Call for medical help and stop taking the drug if there are any signs of an overdose.
- You should not use this for the treatment of other conditions without the consent of your doctor.
- This is not recommended for use in people with tinnitus, myasthenia gravis, and blood in their urine.